2024 Chicago Cubs fan attendance projections at Wrigley Field

Milwaukee Brewers v Chicago Cubs
Milwaukee Brewers v Chicago Cubs / Matt Dirksen/GettyImages

There seems to be a general feeling of cautious optimism among the Chicago Cubs faithful going into 2024. So, how many people will go through the Wrigley Field turnstiles to see them firsthand in 2024?

As pointed out every year, the Cubs should be among the top 10 in attendance every year. It is worth noting, however, that the Cubs drew less than 3 million in 2022 and 2023. Last season, they drew 2,775,149 fans, which is ninth in MLB. They are good by league standards but still a tad low compared to what they typically drew throughout most of the 2000s.

The Cubs had drawn three million+ in 12 seasons since 2004, noting that 2020 and 2021 were impacted by the pandemic, and 2015 just missed the mark (2,919,122)
due to the bleachers being rebuilt in the early months of the season. From 2004 through 2019, they averaged 3,062,527 fans a season, only drawing less than 2.9 million during the Theo Epstein rebuild years (2012-2014).

Looking to 2024, it feels like there is a solid chance they will draw a bit more than 2023. Even if the team did not fully meet some people's expectations this offseason, the hiring of Craig Counsell, bringing Cody Bellinger back and the top-ranked farm system has generated enough buzz for people to be highly invested in the season. Though it's safe to say it's not quite as hyped as 2015-2018 when the old "World Series" core was in its prime. What also factors in is the price of the experience. The Cubs were among the most expensive in ticket prices in 2023 (per Statista) and in early 2022 were cited as the most expensive MLB stadium experience. Paying an average of $141 a ticket will be more appealing to more people if the team is a legit contender.

Combining the factors, a seemingly logical place to put the Cubs over/under in attendance is around 2.8 million. That is more than last year but less than the 3 million drawn during the prime contending years of the Theo Epstein era when expectations were at their highest. Like last year, it would not be surprising if some of those early April and May games draw 20-some thousand fans as opposed to the 38-40K that attend many summer weekend games. Especially now that they play early regular season weeknight games at 6:40 PM, which also has to have some sort of impact on attendance.

Can they get back to 3 million? Cannot say it definitely won't happen, it's just less certain than it was pre-2020. If the Cubs get off to a solid start and are in the race throughout the year, then chances increase as more people decide to come out. Now, if the Cubs had by some miracle landed Shohei Ohtani this season then they would most likely 3 million mark. Right now, we will be just under around 2.8 million for the season with what they have.

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